My Michael Coren moment: How new atheists endorse tribal bigotry just like the religious fundamentalists they despise
Religion, politics and the mundane drama of who’s right and what’s wrong basically sums up the social scene in many cases. We don’t linger long enough to personally investigate or truly comprehend the depths of what creates a person or their perception. But there are certain times we come across individuals who are willing to honestly exchange ideas and confess their wrongs and acknowledge to themselves what they were missing.
Michael Coren is exactly that individual.
I was drinking my coffee and stuffing my face with a sandwich waiting for Coren when I saw him walk into the coffee shop, wearing a blue, casual sports pants and shirt. He’s a god’s man and he wears normal clothes like anyone else. Can you believe the gall on him? Mentally shaking my head right now…
Coren moved to Canada from England in 1987 at the age of 28. He converted to Roman Catholicism and thus begin his spiritual journey through the morbidly unforgiving realm of theocracy versus the moral guidance that binds us altogether despite creed.
Any dissent from the teachings of religion is often frowned upon but what makes faith ever more complicated are the fundamentalists who create impediments to justify their tribal nature in defense of their religion by citing ambiguous scripture in an attempt to cause social distress or physical harm, much of which I had discussed in previous articles.
When Coren began to question some of the contradictions within the Catholic Church, especially about the rights of LGBTQ, his fellow Catholic brethren did more than just frown upon him. He was called an adulterer and people encouraged his wife to leave him. His children were hounded after. One of his daughters was accused of promiscuity and other children were insulted as being “gay” as if 5th grade insults is what God commanded. He was fired. Book sales dropped. He was demonized as a pedophile and images were manufactured to portray him flipping the bird on television and the campaign to injure his reputation came fast and linger on to this day.
The struggle between appeasing the unforgiving hypocrites and doing the right thing was a complicated experience yet it also liberated Coren from the nagging contradictions of religion. He chose to acknowledge his flaws and change his own perception on morality than enable extremists to dictate. Not many religious men are willing to forgo their initial perception in favour of an alternate interpretation of what is “God’s love”. It’s strange when admitting that love is love will land you in more hot water than hell itself.
What is monstrous isn’t just religious hypocrites, but also atheist hypocrites who prowl on social media like trolls under a bridge, waiting to one up on theists. When I began writing, I came in with one objective and that is to discuss moral hypocrisy around the world, especially regarding the treatment of women and girls. I was naïve about social media as I rarely ever used the internet platforms to discuss my thoughts, which enabled a credulous environment that became easily exploited by those who wanted to co-opt what I was saying to push their own narrative. And trust me, recognizing one-self as a credulous imbecile does much damage to the self-esteem.
They exploited my lived experiences and used me as an individual born and raised in the East to deflect criticism of Western bigotry. When this became toxic enough for me to witness what was going on, denial wasn’t an option. It was anti-science and I did step back and I did call out the bigots. I lost readers and gained more trolls, ensued by more doxxing, death and rape threats to the point where now I accept the term “new atheists”.
The prominent atheists who once backed my writing labeled me a “regressive leftist” and threw me under the bus – and this is the moment when I learned the hard way, to my shame, that these same groups of people are morally compromised by tribalism as the very theists they lambaste on a daily basis. If you removed the god-factor from the new atheists and mainstream theists, they would mirror each other as their views on women’s rights, immigration and the LGBTQ didn’t differ much except in why they denigrate them and perpetuate social injustice.
So, imagine what a religious person is also feeling when they are faced with moral hypocrites who want to use and discard them on a whim for their tribe? From my perspective, it seems as if Coren was experiencing the same abuse from the religious side as I, a-nobody writer, did from the atheist side.
This isn’t a new concept. I focused more on religious abuse as I felt it rarely obtains a platform to be discussed. But the new atheist abuse is gaining momentum and many people within the atheist community find it especially repelling as they imitate the same pattern of abuse as religious fundamentalists. Sure, the scale of violence isn’t the same yet we are witnessing a certain degree of violence towards immigrants and Muslims that can be concluded as a direct result of the fear and hate mongering committed by anti-immigrant, pseudo-intellectual atheist movements coupled by their affinity for Western far right movements such as the Alt-Right that garner hundreds of thousands of fans around the world and indoctrinate sheltered minds who then become overnight experts on Sharia or Muslim women’s rights while slut-shaming a woman in a short skirt for being raped in the West. In fact, their cognitive dissonance can be traced right back to how they detest feminism; their bigotry towards women’s rights and social justice is astounding.
This doesn’t mean “all atheists are new atheists”, so before you shout on about with the 1.6 billion logic Muslims invoke when Islam is criticized, how about we have an honest reflection on what our atheist brethren are saying and doing too?
Stephen Fry is an atheist. There are controversies of what he said or didn’t say on social media. He once made a joke about his good friend Jenny Beavan and it was blown out of proportion and he faced a social media backlash, causing him to retire from Twitter. Silly things create a whirlwind of dismay and unnecessary drama – I get that. And aside from frivolous controversies, he is an unapologetic atheist. I understand how social media can end up being a meal time for piranhas with even the slightest of honest mistakes. Fry’s criticism is focused on the ills of organized religion and there is nothing wrong with that. He has been accused of “Islamophobia” – for criticizing obvious ills, such as the intolerance for basic human rights in Islamic society. Death penalty for homosexuality. Death penalty for atheism. Death penalty or imprisonment for women and girls who are raped. Yes, the list of such ills is many and it must be condemned. I won’t implicate someone as a monster for defending fundamental human rights of people in any society – be it an atheist or a theist.
Stephen Fry respects Michael Coren. He does not hound after Coren for being religious. He does not dehumanize Coren for not conforming to a non-belief in a personal god. He respects other humans which is far from the horde of atheist trolls on the internet who display similar attitudes as the biblical cretin from the dark ages.
I criticized Reza Aslan for the same objective I now criticize people like Sam Harris and Dave Rubin whom I once respected as an ally. No, Sam and Dave are not persecuted for their free speech – they are being held accountable for what they say as the consequences of their misinformation and callous disregard for nuances that define minorities, LGBTQ, women, Muslims and immigrants are real. White males on YouTube are not the same as atheists being butchered and shut down in Islamic countries and hell no, it is not alright to pass off noisy rape apologists and racists as “the new center” and destroy any remaining value to that coordination.
Endorsing financial boycott of the ACLU over something one Muslim woman said isn’t logical – in fact, it is anti-science, epitomizes bigotry and gives meaning to the term “Islamophobia”. Encouraging financial demise of an organization that helps protect the constitutional rights of even Nazis and KKK amongst plethora of actual innocent victims of injustice isn’t alright just because you disagree with the speech of one Muslim woman. And this cult-like tribalism must be exposed for the purpose of being denounced. There is no room for moral hypocrisy in a fight for and maintenance of human rights and dignity – no matter where you live and breathe and who you identify as.
Are women under Islam being silenced or should women just shut up about sexism – which is it, Sam Harris? You don’t seem too bright when you are upset about Islamist misogyny enslaving women while endorsing speech that tell western women to shut up and stop complaining to HR when a man writes a misogyny manifesto based on pseudoscience aimed at limiting female potential just as the Imams who claim women drivers will hurt their ovaries and create natural disasters.
How easy it was for Sam Harris and his “acolytes” to agree that a woman’s credentials and experiences should be discarded should she dare object to being abused under patriarchy and implying they should choose between their rights and dignity? That smug accusation that women can only get their jobs through their gender and sex isn’t a new tactic. Religious men have been accusing women of just that for centuries upon centuries and it is a move that is central to silencing women and girls and keep them in a cycle of abuse, preventing them from discovering their full potential. There is no testimony stronger that necessitates the existence of Feminism than these very odious scum that gaslight women and girls in such manner for rejecting patriarchy.
When has Sam Harris and his whiney acolytes protested the American misogyny and sexism that sanctions rape in North Carolina? No, it isn’t Sharia. It is just classic American law. Oh, I see – that’s why you atheist folks don’t protest much about it – you can’t virtue signal about how much better your Western tribe is compared to Eastern Muslims in this situation. Where is your outrage for women forced to cooperate with their rapists in custody and access rights under Family Law that malignantly defines equal rights under the constitution to give rapists the upper hand even while they are behind bars serving their sentence for raping American women and girls? Sharia doesn’t even exist in America but you are gung-ho about protesting it while being mute to Christian American misogyny in your damn backyard. But at least these victims aren’t being stoned to death or being forced to marry their rapist so of course you find a way to justify this blatant sexist abuse and brush it off like dust beneath the carpet to carry on pointing at brown immigrants – who also – should they rape – benefit from the same bloody American law.
But here we are witnessing white men appropriating the struggles of Eastern brown atheists and pretending that somehow Milo Yiannowho is a victim of some malignant censorship campaign. Hashtag Free Milo! He’s been censored on Twitter! He is now the new Raif Badawi, I suppose…? How many times did he have to face being flogged? Oh, of course – he was asked to take his pro-pedophilia, racist and sexist ramblings and disappear into the night by mean leftists – so of course, he’s now a free speech warrior just like the rest of the rambling idiots on YouTube like Stefan Molynuex, Jordan Peterson, et al who were elevated in the name of free speech by Dave Rubin (who Sam Harris actively endorses) for merely whining about feminism, gender pronouns and mean leftist campus kids. Who’s the snowflake now?
The new atheist persecution complex is equal to that of a fool clamouring on about how homosexuals and empowered women are bringing about the apocalypse. Sam Harris, you are not a victim nor a hero. You will not be martyred on the gates of Free Speech – not today – not ever. You’re just an imitation of religious misogyny veiled in cheap intellectualism.
There are many reasons to seek out people who you can have an honest conversation with to probe their contradictions but also their sincerity to reform their own social practices. I have not seen much of that recently from the atheists due to the above reasoning. Where does this leave theists like Michael Coren, who is now an Anglican? Right next to every humanist who value human rights above their own egotism. He advances the sincere concept of morality than the nefarious interpretation pushed throughout conservatism and for that he must be appreciated as an ally. He has remained consistent on his spiritual path, struggled to resolve the contradictions in his own beliefs and came out choosing intellectual honesty – which new atheists are quickly compromising for opportunity. He is a fine example of what happens when people approach the ‘marketplace of ideas’ with integrity instead of frothing at the mouth with contempt for a certain group.
The basic principle behind humanism is to isolate the wrongs, gather the facts and undo the ills of society or limit them to the best of our ability. I was wrong to blindly accept everyone on my side and foolishly stepping into the atheist echo chambers. Coren came to realize his own missteps and recognized how it wore him down. If realization of humanism isn’t what life is about, then I don’t know what is and we should all remain in a perpetual state of drunkenness. If you can’t practice what you preach, at least have the decency to admit openly that you’re human garbage. Don’t cut around the bushes and dance around with semantics and then get pedantic to deflect what you actually conveyed. That is lazy and far from any form of intellectualism.
You can buy Michael Coren’s latest book “Epiphany” on Amazon. It is endorsed by Stephen Fry, an atheist—absolutely disgusting, am I right—my new atheists?
I was disappointed to leave the coffee shop without any Victorian melodrama and talks of divine retribution. The only monstrosity was that Michael Coren likes both tea and coffee.